More than three quarters of Australians say they expect to spend the same amount or more over summer, in a clear sign that they are growing in confidence about the national response to the coronavirus. Our survey of 1,750 Australians, taken Monday 2 – Wednesday 4 November, shows that concern about coronavirus and the economy is easing and many are keen to get out and about and celebrate the festive season with family and friends.
In a new measure more than three quarters (77%) of Australians say they plan to spend the same or more on retail, personal and hospitality services over summer as they would have before coronavirus. This includes 58% who will spend about the same amount and 19% who expect to spend more, providing a potential boost to retail outlets and shopping centres in the lead up to Christmas.
We have seen significant changes in reports of household income over the last month with two thirds of Australians (65%, up from 58% a month ago) now saying their household income is the same or better than it was before the coronavirus. In the last month those saying their household income is the same as before coronavirus has increased from 43% to 48% and those saying they are worse off has dropped from 41% to 36%. In the same period those saying they are better off has increased from 14% to 17%.
Nearly six in ten Australians (59%) now support opening up state borders within a month. Following the WA Government’s announcement of changes to border arrangements, support for state borders opening within a month has increased significantly in WA (44% up from 26% last week), with seven in ten (70%) supporting borders opening in three months (up from 55% last week). Half of those in WA (50%) now say borders should be open by Christmas, and this is significantly higher than last week (31%).
Opinion in Queensland has remained stable this week with 51% supporting all Australian borders opening within a month and 77% supporting opening within three months.
Around six in ten (58%) plan to travel within their own state over the summer period and a quarter (23%) say they will travel to another state. A further 31% say they don’t plan to travel at all over summer. NSW is the most popular destination for travel with 28% of Australians saying they will travel to or within the state. Looking at specific regions, Sydney, the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast/Noosa are the most popular destinations this summer.
Victorians have welcomed the easing of restrictions, with results showing those who say they are being eased too slowly dropping from 40% to 28% over the last two weeks and those saying it’s being done at the right pace increasing from 49% to 55%. Despite this, 17% say they are being eased too quickly. The proportion who say the restrictions are making their day-to-day life very difficult remains high at 44% in Victoria compared to 37% in NSW and 24% in Queensland.